Before Ryan Chell and I hop back on AM1570 WNST & WNST.net for the “Nasty Purple Postgame Show” presented by Poor Boys in Dundalk, I figured I’d share ten things that stuck out with me from the first half of Ravens-Chiefs.
Feel free to chime in at 410-481-1570 as the game is wrapping up to share your thoughts as well.
1. I still don’t like the lack of offensive rhythm. I’d just like to see a cohesive drive. It has to start up front, and we’re just not seeing that right now. It will bring me to my second point.
2. Jah Reid was pretty good, Michael Oher was okay, Oniel Cousins was okay. The penalties….the penalties are just completely inexcusable.
3. This was clearly not a night Joe Flacco will want to think about moving forward. There were a couple nice throws to Lee Evans, but otherwise he was terribly inconsistent. He was often forced to throw the ball away when flushed, which is at least better than a sack.
4. Lee Evans was exciting to watch. He can’t work sideline routes because of his size, but looked good in the go and on the wheel. He also showed sure hands over the middle, which is a good sign.
5. I like the Ray Rice/Ricky Williams combination. It wasn’t perect Friday night, but you can see how they complement each other. Meanwhile, Vonta Leach is tough. But we were expecting that. The head lowering “boom” was fun.
6. Cary Williams was clearly impressive in the first quarter, but struggled a bit in the second quarter. He’s not a starter despite working with the first team tonight, but he’s making it very clear why he should be ahead of Lardarius Webb on the depth chart.
7. Jimmy Smith might eventually be able to handle good receivers-even Pro Bowl receivers like Dwayne Bowe. He’s not quite ready to do that yet however. He has the physical tools, it will just take a little more time to adjust to the NFL level. I still think he’s going to be good, perhaps as early as this season.
8. There was a time when I didn’t think Sergio Kindle would ever play in Charm City. I’ve done a 180. I think he’s going to be a player, perhaps a good one. He hasn’t shown “quarterback menace” yet, but his speed and power are impressive. Pernell McPhee, Arthur Jones and Paul Kruger each also looked good.
9. Billy Cundiff might have made his field goal from 65 yards out. Stunning news I know, he has a hell of a boot.
10. John Harbaugh would not leave the postgame interview room without answering a question about the decision to defer if I were at the game. As far as I’m concerned, it wouldn’t really matter what his answer was either. There’s just no excuse for deferring in a preseason game. You defer as part of a strategy to win a football game. Winning doesn’t matter in the preseason.
It was a puzzling decision that set the tone for a lack of offensive continuity to open the game.
I expect more deferrals in the regular season as the kickoff rule nearly assures receiving teams will start at the 20 yard line, but there’s absolutely no explanation for deferring in the preseason.
Talk to you at 10:30 on the postgame show.